Mental Health Research

Data collection critical to understanding and treating eating disorders

Data collection critical to understanding and treating eating disorders

More than 30 million Americans experience an eating disorder in their lifetime. That’s nearly one in 10. Yet, depending on the diagnosis, as few as 6 percent will receive treatment. Those statistics are even more harrowing when you consider that eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. They intersect in complex ways with increased risks for suicide, substance abuse, depression, obesity and a long list of potential short and long-term medical complications.

What can be done about it? Awareness is the first step to change, but planning large-scale countermeasures requires real data on the extent of the problem. How do people from varied backgrounds and...

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